Pocket’s Incentivized Testnet Comes to DAppNode

Alberto Jauregui
Apr 27 · 4 min read

DAppNode and Pocket share a vision for self-sovereign, censorship-resistant, decentralized infrastructure. Let’s be honest here: without decentralized infrastructure, DApps aren’t really decentralized. They are just apps with extra steps.

We’ve noticed that a tragedy of the node commons is befalling blockchain ecosystems. Research indicates that full-node counts are both decreasing and centralizing into the hands of few. For example, Ethereum hit a yearly peak of 8226 nodes on February 18th. But as of April 16th, it has been slashed to 6146 nodes. Fewer nodes mean a more fragile system.. But why is the node count falling? This is due to a couple of factors, such as the lack of incentives and the convenience of cloud providers.

We are en route to change that with the release of the Pocket DappNode Package (DNP), now available in the DAppNode installer menu. By participating in our incentivized testnet, individual node operators will be able to earn incentives for running nodes prior to our mainnet launch (and before ETH 2.0 too).

How do we encourage the sustainable decentralization of networks?

Increasing the diversity of nodes (setups and geographically) will lead to the sustainable decentralization of blockchain networks. That means we need to include those at the edge that are eager to maintain infra for the next-gen internet (and get paid for it). To ensure a healthy ecosystem, a network needs a diverse set of nodes from small to big operators.

Pocket’s barrier to entry is relatively low compared to other networks. After hardware costs, the marginal costs of running a Pocket Node becomes only as high as an operator’s electricity and bandwidth costs. This allows anyone to participate at any scale and start tapping into an extra stream of revenue.

Because of load balancing at the protocol level, work is evenly distributed across all nodes of the Pocket Network. This essentially means node operators are treated the same, from a DappNode to a Data Center. There’s an equal chance of pseudo-randomly being chosen to receive the work of relaying API requests. Load balancing encourages node operators to scale horizontally by launching more nodes so that they can increase their chances of being picked for work. The horizontal redundancy of nodes adds to the resiliency and security of a network significantly.

By adding an incentive layer on top of the base blockchain layer we can connect both sides of the ecosystem: on one side, those who are able and willing to maintain infrastructure can be rewarded for providing access to their nodes, so Ethereum and other networks can stop being run by enthusiasts and those who have no choice (like businesses which depend on it), and more node operators will join if it provides them an economic incentive. On the other hand, those who need access to nodes can use Pocket as a decentralized alternative to centralized, web2.0 Node as a Service (NaaS) providers. DAppNode makes it very easy for everyone to spin up nodes and start offering access through Pocket, while Pocket’s API makes it trivial to access a decentralized pool of nodes at a dynamic, protocol-determined price, with highly-redundant uptime and complete privacy. As Pocket scales, base blockchains benefit from an increased number of nodes, leading to a virtuous spiral, a festival of the node commons! With Pocket’s incentive model, we estimate we can increase the node count of Ethereum by 1000 nodes by the end of the year. But, we can’t do it without you!

Who are we looking for?

Stewards, like you. The node runners living on the edge forming the long-tail of decentralized infrastructure capable of challenging the FAANG monopolies. Pocket enables node runners to essentially become mini-infuras, by being rewarded for relaying API requests to and from DApps.

What does this mean for Nodlers?

DAppNode owners can now join Pocket’s incentivized testnet. This gives Nodlers a chance to practice coordination before mainnet, and the opportunity to earn POKT to subsidize their staking costs come mainnet, further reducing the already low marginal costs of running a node.

Here’s how to join Pocket’s Incentivized Testnet as a DAppNode Nodler:

  1. Set up a DappNode with https://bit.ly/DAppNodeDocumentation or purchase a pre-configured DAppNode at https://bit.ly/DAppNodeShop
  2. Run an Ethereum Node
  3. Install the Pocket DNP
  4. Sign up for Incentivized Testnet
  5. Join us on Discord

Use this tutorial to learn how to install the Pocket Core DNP in your DAppNode. If you need assistance, jump into our #noderunner Discord support channel.

Once Pocket’s mainnet launches (estimated end of Q2/beginning of Q3), DAppNode owners will be able to generate a constant stream of passive income. During these uncertain times, we want to be able to provide node operators with a way to generate value while application developers save both time and money.

To celebrate the release of the new Pocket DNP, we are giving away one DAppNode Advanced to a lucky winner! And that lucky winner will be able to gift another DAppNode Advanced to either a friend, colleague, or project.

Follow the directions in this Twitter thread to participate in our giveaway.

Connect with Pocket:

As an open-source project, you can keep up with our progress on Github.

To get started with integrating PocketJS or running a Pocket node, visit our developer portal.

For updates, follow us on Twitter and subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

Join us on Discord to coordinate with the team and community.

Pocket Network

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